Construction workers back with a grumble
Published Wednesday, May 31, 2017 1:31PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, May 31, 2017 8:03PM EDT
The day after back-to-work legislation was approved by the National Assembly, construction workers across Quebec returned to job sites.
Many workers said they were unhappy with the special law putting an end to their week-old strike.
The law gives them a 1.8 percent pay increase but otherwise leaves all other aspects of their previous contract intact.
However labour unions and the Quebec Construction Association must return to negotiations, and once again will be assisted by mediators.
Eric Coté of the Quebec Construction Association said he was disppointed with the legislation.
"They got an increase in their wages, and we didn't get anything in exchange for the demands that we have. We have to go back to the negotiation table to get an agreement and to find something in this deal. We were hoping for a win-win solution. they got part of their win, and we look forward to get something in return also," said Coté.
If a deal cannot be worked out by October, the contract negotiations will be handled through binding arbitration. That would also give Transportation Minister Laurent Lessard the opportunity to intervene and set certain conditions.
Employers' groups have been seeking more flexibility in setting start times for employees, and in altering schedules so that workers can work on Saturdays without being paid overtime.
Workers said they want to ensure they have time to spend with their families.